Stephanie from Swoodson Says showed us how to make a Toddler Activity Mat last year, and now she has a quick Valentine project just right for family or classroom fun. Make a set of these Valentine Arrows for an elementary school party or for your home!

Stephanie’s pattern shop has a new freebie plus a new Palette Matching Toy for sale. You might also enjoy her Try Something New Each Month project for 2015, and you can sign up for her newsletter with weekly creative links and calendar items here. Find Stephanie on Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram.

Valentine’s Day sewing often involves lots of pincushions, buntings and sweet stuffed animals but I wanted something fun for my toddler, husband and I to all play. These arrow-shaped bean bags are a quick sew, and a target is easy to mark out on your floor with washi or masking tape.

I made the front half of the arrow weighted so they throw and “stick” like a dart, which makes them more fun to throw.

There is something irresistible about this shape for little hands; after playing toss for a while, my son carried the arrows around and piled them up in his dump truck. You could add ribbons to the tail-end for even more fun!

Ready to make your own set?

When sewing, make sure to use a short stitch length to prevent beads and stuffing from poking out. You could use rice or small beans instead of the poly-pellets, but I prefer poly-pellets because then you can machine wash the finished product!


  • Printable pattern
  • Poly-fill polyester beads
  • Poly-fill polyester stuffing
  • Hemostats or a chopstick
  • Woven cotton scraps that measure approximately 10″ x 8″ (you can get three arrows cut out of a layer cake piece, 10″ x 10″), 1 rectangle per arrow
  • Coordinating thread, sewing machine, scissors
  • 3 colors of washi tape for the target (optional)

1.Cut two arrow pieces from main fabric, place wrong sides together. Sew ¼” from the edge, all the way around leaving a small opening near the arrow’s tail.

2. Use a rolled up piece of paper or a small funnel and fill the front of the arrow with Poly-fill beads, stopping before they overflow out the opening.

3. Use hemostats or a chopstick and insert stuffing firmly into the tail of the arrow and through the body until meeting the beads. Sew the opening shut.

4. Use pinking shears to trim all of the outside edges, being careful not to cut through the stitching lines.

For storage, I cut a few extra arrows and appliquéd them on to a drawstring bag I already had laying around. There are some great contributor tutorials to make a drawstring bag if you don’t have any spares.

I hope you have an extra hour to sew up some arrow beanbags, tape down a target and have some Valentine’s fun with your family! I love handmade toys so be sure to subscribe to my weekly newsletter and see what fun I’m sharing at Swoodson Says.